Oklahoma Centennial Sponsors:

Individual cvilleok.com Oklahoma Centennial pages from a Collinsville perspective will appear periodically this year.

Ted Wright (918) 371-1901 or email: wrightted@aol.com.
Collinsville, Oklahoma
July 8, 2007
Oklahoma Centennial
7th in A Series
As We Approach Oklahoma's First Century As A State
This web site is brought to you by the Newspaper Museum In Collinsville and the other advertisers appearing on these pages. If you would like to provide content or advertisements ...
call Ted Wright (918) 371-1901 or send email to wrightted@aol.com.

Sampling of Life
In Collinsville
1910 - 1919
Zinc Smelters Brought Jobs & Money / Most Existing Downtown Buildings Built / County Switch / World War and Deadly Flu Epidemic

(email questions/comments to wrightted@aol.com).
Ted Wright -- last update 7/8/2007 (OKCentennial7.html) www.cvilleok.com

Copyright 2007 -- Collinsville, Oklahoma
Two large zinc smelters located just south of Collinsville in 1911. Ore from all over the world was brought here to be processed in the less than 10 years the smelters were active here.
Collinsville's second smelter apparently located here from Iola, Kansas. There were several other Oklahoma and Kansas smelters that workers moved between when work loads changed in the several communities.
This is a portion of one of the Collinsville smelters which carried the name of the parent company (Barlesville Zinc Smelter) despite the Collinville location.
Collinsville made it's own bricks between 1906 and 1962. The streets were paved and most wooden buildings downtown were replaced with brick buildings between ~1909 and ~1920.
Collinsville grew in population, wealth and area during the teen years.
Collinsville's population of 2740 in December 1912 would later reach approximately 8000 as the smelters and community prospered in the teen years.
Collinsville's second High School building was built in 1912. The Library wasn't built until 1917. (City Hall 1913)
Two photos I have on display at the Newspaper Museum show a transition from 1906 with only horses on Main Street Collinsville to 1915 with more cars than horses. The local newspapers often carried stories of smelter workers killed, burned or otherwise mangled in this dangerous and extremely hot work environment.
The one cent per ounce postage rate in 1913 is notable compared to 2007's (ever increasing) 41 cent rate. I'm not sure where the oysters came from as even with rail lines for delivery to Collinsville there were not refrigerated cars unless they just used ice in insulated boxes? Perhaps canned oysters?
This 1914 map shows what almost looks like a second separete community in the area commonly referred to as "Smelter Hill" adjoining the actual smelters which were on each side of the Sante Fe railroad south of town. Highland Park (South Ward) School was built on Smelter Hill in 1912. South Park Methodist Church was also built nearby in 1912. These buildings and most of the roads no longer exist on Smelter Hill. At the peak of smelter activity many workers lived in tents as there were not enough homes in the area.
When Oklahoma became a state in 1906 Collinsville was a part of Rogers County but there was no rail line connecting Collinsville and the County Seat at Claremore. The 1918 Collinsville vote above made the unique county switch possible and the boundry of Tulsa County was moved west to include Collinsville. Collinsville and Tulsa had been connected by rail since 1905.
The high school football games were played in the day time as there were no lighted fields for many years. The study of bacteria and diseases was much less advanced than today and proper sanitation was always an issue.
The end of what is now known as World War I was major news in Collinsville with the Armistice signed Nov. 11, 1918. Collinsville lost soldiers in the war but far fewer than were lost to the flu epidemic which was a world wide disaster spread in part by the transport of soldiers all over the world.
Collinsville schools were closed for weeks and other public gatherings were prohibited during the Spanish Influenza epidemic of 1918. So many Collinsville citizens died that the newspapers started just listing names of the dead instead of individual news items.
You may have noted these news articles came from the 3 competing Collinsville newspaper during the teen years: the News, Star & Times. Some daily newspapers were even published in addition to the normal weekly editions. -- Ted Wright -- Newspaper Museum In Collinsville